The British industrial design firm IDC
has come up with something that they say could save lives. It’s a sort
of skin that sits on the outside of a motorcycle helmet.
Why skin? It’s not for that late-summer
tan that looks so cool on the patio, but to reduce injuries from
rotational forces. When a helmet hits the road, it is often violently
twisted. A moveable, flexible skin that sits over the hard shell of
the helmet could absorb some of that torque, they say, and reduce the
twisting force that’s applied to the head.
So they invented a helmet that’s
covered with a "superskin" — and then sold the idea to Lazer
"Traditionally, motorcycle helmets
have been rigid in design," says managing director Stephen Knowles
in a website release. "We needed to introduce a dynamic element of
movement to dramatically reduce the rotational impact which often
causes life-threatened injuries. On impact, the outer membrane is
able to stretch and slide over the main helmet shell to prevent these
dangerous rotational forces being transmitted to the head and brain."
The development of a skin-like
substance was key to the project. They produced a strong synthetic
material that sits on a gel-like lubricant over the helmet shell. The
skin-like material stretches up to eight times its length.
The helmet is called Superskin and
reduces rotational impact by 50 per cent, they say. Lazer will bring
it out in their full-face Solano and open-face Rider range of helmets
this summer — at least, in the UK.
See idc.uk.com for more.